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Summary: Have you ever wondered why God allows some things to happen. God gives us so much, and yet people chose to reject him as Lord and Savior.

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I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I WILL HAVE MERCY

ROMANS 9:1-17

HAVE YOU EVER WONDERED WHY GOD ALLOWS SOME THINGS TO HAPPEN? WHY IS IT THAT HE ALLOWS A MILITANT GROUP LIKE ISIS TO THRIVE IN OUR WORLD? WHY IS IT THAT HE CHOSE TO ALLOW US TO LIVE IN SUCH A RELATIVELY SAFE PLACE, AND PUT OTHERS IN THE MIDST OF WAR AND FAMINE? GOD IS IN CONTROL, AND WITH A SWIPE OF HIS HAND OR JUST A VOCAL COMMAND, HE COULD CHANGE EVERYTHING IN THE WORLD SITUATION, SO WHY DOESN’T HE AND ALLIEVIATE ALL THE STRESS AND PAIN THAT IS IN THE WORLD? IS IT FAIR FOR GOD’S BLESSINGS TO FLOW TO SOME AND NOT TO OTHERS?

THIS IS THE ISSUE THAT PAUL SEEKS TO ADDRESS IN THE NEXT THREE CHAPTERS OF ROMANS. THIS WOULD APPEAR TO BE OUT OF CONTEXT, AND, IN SOME WAYS UNNECESSARY FOR PAUL TO DEAL WITH HERE. IT WOULD HAVE MADE PERFECT SENSE TO GO DIRECTLY FROM 8:39, TO ROMANS 12:1, BUT PAUL CHOSE TO DISCUSS THIS ISSUE IN MORE DETAIL RIGHT HERE.

SOME BIBLICAL SCHOLARS CHOOSE TO LOOK AT ROMANS 9-11 AS A COMPLETE CHANGE OF FOCUS OR DIRECTION AND DO NOT ASSOCIATE IT WITH CHAPER 8 AT ALL. I BELIEVE IT IS STILL A PART OF PAUL’S IDEA BEING PRESENTED IN CHAPTER 8.

CHAPTER 8 IS ONE OF IF NOT THE MOST ENCOURAGING CHAPTERS OF SCRIPTURE FOR THE CHRISTIAN. TO KNOW THERE IS NOW BECAUSE WE ARE BORN-AGAIN THAT THERE IS NO CONDEMNATION AND DEATH HAS NO VICTORY OVER US. WHO CAN NOT BE ENCOURAGED BY PAUL’S WORDS IN VERSE 38-39:

ROMANS 8:38-39:

FOR I AM CONVINCED THAT NEITHER DEATH NOR LIFE, NEITHER ANGELS NOR DEMONS, NEITHER THE PRESENT NOR THE FUTURE, NOR ANY POWERS, 39 NEITHER HEIGHT NOR DEPTH, NOR ANYTHING ELSE IN ALL CREATION, WILL BE ABLE TO SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD THAT IS IN CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD

PAUL IN CHAPTER 9 BEGINS BY DEALING WITH THE FACT THAT MANY OF HIS OWN PEOPLE, THE “CHOSEN PEOPLE” HAVE CHOSEN TO REJECT THE CALL OF GOD TO THEM. IT IS LITERALLY BEYOND THE COMPREHENSION OF PAUL THAT THIS WOULD BE THE CASE WHICH HE IS THINKING ON AS HE BEGINS CHAPTER 9 FOR WHEN YOU PUT THE LAST TWO VERSES OF CHAPTER 8 WITH THE FIRST THREE VERSES OF CHAPTER NINE A NEW INTERPRETATION IS POSSIBLE.

ROMANS 8:38-9:3:

FOR I AM CONVINCED THAT NEITHER DEATH NOR LIFE, NEITHER ANGELS NOR DEMONS, NEITHER THE PRESENT NOR THE FUTURE, NOR ANY POWERS, 39 NEITHER HEIGHT NOR DEPTH, NOR ANYTHING ELSE IN ALL CREATION, WILL BE ABLE TO SEPARATE US FROM THE LOVE OF GOD THAT IS IN CHRIST JESUS OUR LORD. 9 I SPEAK THE TRUTH IN CHRIST—I AM NOT LYING, MY CONSCIENCE CONFIRMS IT THROUGH THE HOLY SPIRIT—2 I HAVE GREAT SORROW AND UNCEASING ANGUISH IN MY HEART. 3 FOR I COULD WISH THAT I MYSELF WERE CURSED AND CUT OFF FROM CHRIST FOR THE SAKE OF MY PEOPLE, THOSE OF MY OWN RACE, 4 THE PEOPLE OF ISRAEL.

IT HAS BEEN SAID THAT IF A STORY IS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT PROBABLY IS. I BELIEVE THIS IS WHAT PAUL FACED AS HE BEGAN CHAPTER 9. THE JEWISH PEOPLE COULD ACCEPT SOME OF THE TRUTH PAUL SPOKE OF WHEN IT CAME TO THE MESSIAH, BUT FOR THE MESSIAH TO COME IN THE PERSON OF JESUS CHRIST, AND FOR HIS DEATH ON THE CROSS TO BE SUFFICIENT TO THE POINT THAT NO FURTHER ANIMAL SACRIFICES WOULD BE NECESSARY, AND TO HEAR OF THE BEAUTY OF HEAVEN THAT AWAITED THEM THROUGH FAITH IN CHRIST, WAS TOO MUCH FOR THEM TO ACCEPT.


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